If you’re going to make your own website, you are most likely considering using a drag and drop page builder like WIX or Square Space. These platforms are ideal because they offer an all in one solution for your website needs and a simple editing process. However, with this simplicity, you are limited in terms of your website capabilities. If you don’t want to be limited by platforms the best alternative is a WordPress website. However, nobody ever talks about the potential issues of choosing a Wordpess hosting provider.
The Limitations When You Make Your Own Website With A Drag and Drop Builder
Let me first start off by saying, I got introduced to web design 8 years ago in college. The assignment is one of my classes was “Make Your Own Website For Something You Would Like To See.” Essentially, I made a website that exactly was the concept of Spotify. (Avid user of Spotify since this project) The point I’m making though is I had never created a website before. So, I used Wix since it was free and simple. Perfect for someone like me who had no idea what I was doing.
After about two months of using WIX, it was clear to me that the complexity of what I wanted was not possible in this platform. It was ideal for a proof of concept, which is all the assignment was. Fast forward 2 years later and I got a job as a digital marketing manager for a painting company in Denver. They were outsourcing their web design to a company in India because they were utilizing a WordPress website. After some tinkering around, I found that it wasn’t so difficult to manage a WordPress site. The difference was night and day with what I was capable of doing on that platform compared to WIX.
Fast forward another 2 years, and I became the digital marketing director for a company that specifically worked with all painting contractors across the nation. I started working with contractors of various website platforms: WordPress, WIX, SquareSpace, and even custom coded. The cost when you make your own website on Squarespace or WIX is hard to beat compared to working with a marketing agency. However, at a certain point, all these contractors would eventually hit a ceiling with these platforms other than WordPress.
A majority of my clients that were using a SquareSpace or WIX would request a specific feature on seen our WordPress website and I would have to explain why it wasn’t possible to do for them. A few of the features requested were:
- Detailed custom forms with conditional logic (different questions based on the answers received)
- Parallax backgrounds (the images that reveal themselves as you scroll)
- Extensive SEO on their site and blogs (search engine optimization)
- Custom login/registration pages for users on a website
- Customizability for certain website features (for example a live IG feed, pricing table, or before/after slider)
If you’re looking to just get something on the web and you want to make your own website there is nothing wrong with a platform like WIX or Squarespace. They have some pretty awesome incentives like free Google Ads credits, G-Suite partnerships, and automatic updates. However, just be aware that you might have to redesign your website on another platform like WordPress in the future if you’re looking to take your website to a truly professional level. I have clients that insist on using these platforms and I always have to give them a disclaimer that I can build a custom website but it’s not going to be the same level as my customized WordPress sites.
I’d highly recommend using WordPress to make your own website because it sets you up better for the future. A pro tip is that professional web designers like myself still use a drag and drop editor on our WordPress sites to speed up our workflow. I was introduced to Elementor by my web designer at my previous agency and I find it to take what I love about Wix or Squarespace but gives me flexibility if I need something more advanced.
When You Make Your Own Website On WordPress And Now You Have To Host It Somewhere
Okay so you’ve decided to make your own website on WordPress and it works perfectly for you. This is where I see a lot of mistakes made by people who aren’t experts in the industry. They end up hosting their website with a company like GoDaddy, BlueHost, or the evil WordPress.com. This is a guaranteed way to get frustrated having a Wordpess website. When choosing a hosting provider you want to look at if they include:
- SSL Certificates (the bare minimum of site security)
- Regularly Scheduled Backups (Let’s say you mess something up royally, or something goes wrong. A backup is key!)
- Email Hosting (G-Suite is only like $6/user/month but not everyone needs that)
- Customer Support (Not all customer support is the same)
A lot of web hosting companies charge extra for these important features I mentioned like email hosting, SSL certificates, and backups. They lure you in with their “cheap” pricing but then upsell you on everything you need for a website. So make sure you’re checking around to see what gets offered for the pricing.
The scariest part of a WordPress website is the backend hosting with databases, php files, directories, and server details. All the backend is hidden from you on WIX and Squarespace which makes them so appealing for when you want to make your own website. However, this is stuff you don’t have to worry about 99% of the time. It’s just that 1%s is why I stress the importance of good customer support. My favorite saying about GoDaddy customer support is that if you don’t like the answer a technical specialist gives you, wait 15min, call back again and maybe you’ll talk to someone who knows what they’re doing.
I utilize Siteground as my web hosting provider for this site as well as all my clients. The main reason being is that their customer support is unapparelled to any other company. I know this because I’ve had to reach out to every hosting provider at least once in my experience of working with other client sites. Additionally, Sitground offers all those features and more in their most basic package. The only warning I have to give is to make sure you purchase as many months as you can in advance because that pricing almost doubles when your plan has to renew.
Are You Trying To Make Your Own Website & Need Some Advice?
If you’re looking to make your own website and aren’t sure what will work best for you, DOS-M can help. We specialize in web design as well as many other digital services. Please visit our contact page to get in touch or schedule a free discovery call. We help provide creative solutions for creative entrepreneurs and are happy to offer our expertise any time you need; even if you’re looking to make your own website!